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If Apple Jumped Off a Bridge, Would Microsoft Jump, Too?
June 22, 2012 04:05 PM
EVERYWARE IS EVERYWHERE
One of the reasons
) products tend to work so well is because Cupertino controls every aspect of production. Since software and hardware are designed in-house, and in tandem, the Macbooks, iPads, and iPhones they create tend to work better than competing products. Vertical integration -- from purchasing chip makers to selling products in exclusively branded stores -- has assured a refined, oft-imitated quality and cemented a remarkable brand identity.
So, of course
) is trying to copy the model. Would you expect anything less?
Buzzfeed calls the
discernable shift in the tech industry
Everyware. It’s the idea that in order for a software company to truly remain competitive, it must bring hardware production in-house. Since 1975, Microsoft has made few waves in the computer hardware sector, save for a few branded
mice and keyboards
here and there. Microsoft has survived as long as it has by selling software to hardware makers like
Lenovo Group Limited
), and the privately held Samsung, who in turn deliver it installed on their products to consumers.
One reason this model worked so well for so long is because Windows held over
90% market share
for nearly two decades, until last year when Mac OS X started to account for a larger share of the market. Don’t forget, however, that while Apple seems to be everywhere, Microsoft Windows still stakes claim to an 89.7% versus Mac OS’s 5.25%.
Still, Microsoft sees Apple as a threat, and bolstered by the success of its Xbox 360 -- designed and built from the ground up completely in-house -- it took the same approach with its recently announced Surface tablet. While it’s debatable whether or not the new tablet
will be able to hold its weight in the iPad market
, it shows initiative on Microsoft’s part.
Or, simply Microsoft is copying Apple’s wildly successful strategies, which is not a stupid idea.
Taking another cue from Apple, Microsoft has 26 planned-or-existing retail spaces, which appear to be
to Apple Stores in both aesthetics and operation.
) is guilty of the Everyware trend. The search engine giant not only designed the original Nexus phone, but works very closely in the Android OS device’s manufacturing process.
In-house hardware development might mean more buyouts like
Apple’s acquisition of P.A. Semi
, a microprocessor design firm, in 2008. And maybe there will be a day -- a long, long time in the future, say, a year and half -- when the thought of purchasing a computer or piece of hardware from Microsoft, Google, and, of course, Apple that wasn’t designed and built in-house will be ludicrous.
Microsoft Surface Will Have an Imperfect Launch
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No positions in stocks mentioned.
REMARKABLE BRAND IDENTITY
COMPUTER HARDWARE SECTOR
HARDWARE PRODUCTION IN-HOUSE
LENOVO GROUP LIMITED
HEWLETT PACKARD COMPANY
HOUSE HARDWARE DEVELOPMENT
GALAXY NEXUS PHONE
MICROPROCESSOR DESIGN FIRM
SEARCH ENGINE GIANT
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